Providence Hospital System Enforces Strict COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

Providence Hospital System, one of the largest Catholic healthcare systems in the United States, imposed a stringent mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy for its employees.

This decision, announced via their InOurCircle app, requires all employees, regardless of their vaccination status, to receive the latest COVID-19 vaccine.

The vaccine, recently granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), is designed to combat the latest strains of the virus.

Non-compliance with this directive could lead to severe consequences, including unpaid leave or even termination.

This policy update comes amidst rising cases of COVID-19 and evidence suggesting the updated vaccines are effective at preventing serious illness from the latest strains.

The Providence family of organizations, which operates over 50 hospitals, 1,000 clinics, and employs 120,000 individuals across seven states, made it clear the health and safety of the community are paramount.

However, the mandate sparked controversy, particularly among employees who may have personal, medical, or religious reasons for choosing not to get vaccinated.

The organization, which prides itself on its commitment to the health of all, especially those who are poor and vulnerable, now faces criticism for potentially disregarding the personal freedoms of its own employees.

Adding to the complexity of the situation, New York Governor Kathy Hochul recently confirmed previous vaccinations and boosters would not protect against new variants of the virus.

The FDA’s approval of updated Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for 2023-2024 underscores the need for continued vigilance and adaptation in the face of evolving strains like Omicron XBB.1.5.

Governor Hochul’s message was clear and unequivocal, “It is literally a new vaccine, it is not a booster shot, it is not an enhancer. It is a new vaccine designed to attack the new variants.”

This statement dismantles any comfort that individuals may have taken from previous vaccinations and emphasizes the seriousness of the current situation.

The Providence Hospital System set a November 30 deadline for employees to provide proof of vaccination or submit a declination form. Those who fail to comply by this deadline may be removed from the schedule, placed on unpaid leave, and could face termination for continued non-compliance.